“Good food for great kids”

Radio Hour Scheduled to Educate Community and Focus Conversation
around School Lunch
Retiring Food Service Director opens up Opportunity for Families to Act

February, 2011 (Madison, WI).  The excitement is building throughout parents in the Madison Metropolitan School District that there might be hope for the health of students who eat school lunch.  With MMSD Food Service Director Frank Kelly set to retire this summer, momentum is building to educate the community about the unhealthy state of the school lunch system.

Madison Families for Better Nutrition is moving forward with several community educational opportunities.  They have written and published a Healthy School Food Resolution (found at http://dumpthejunknow.wordpress.com/2011/02/02/healthy-school-food-resolution-2/).  This resolution was passed by three Parent Teacher Associations, including Lowell Elementary, Gompers Elementary, and OKeefe Middle School.

Their next effort will be to host a Radio Show on WORT (89.9) on February 21, 2011, at 7pm.  During the first part of the show, Dr. Nancy Gutknecht  will speak about what the bad food does to our kids.  The second part of the show will be live interviews with kids who attend Frank Allis Elementary who formed a group “Boycott School Lunch” in 2009 when they were in the 4th grade (http://www.schoolfoodpolicy.com/2009/04/27/students-get-attention-with-plans-for-a-school-lunch-boycott/)  The  third part of the show will feature Diane Chapeta, the Nutrition Manager for Chilton Public Schools, who has drastically changed their school lunch system to include local whole and nutritious foods.

Community members are encouraged to call in during the program to talk about their experiences with their children and school lunch, as well as ask questions of the three experts.  Locally, call 256-2001;  Toll Free, call 866-899-WORT (9678).

The group, whose motto is “Good Food for Great Kids” successfully acted to have the Slushie Machine removed from  OKeefe  Middle School (Isthmus, http://www.isthmus.com/daily/article.php?article=30984).

The group had decided to focus this year on getting Sugared Drinks out of the schools, but now is expanding their focus to help get the right person into the Food Service Directors position.  Because 1 in 4 of todays children are considered obese, and given that 40% of MMSD students through Free and Reduced Meal Service (FARMS) eat the innutritious food every day as their main calorie source, the group is hoping the MMSD Board of Directors will see the urgency of this hire.  “This one decision will affect the health of the communitys children for the next 30 years,” says Martha Pings, active member in the group.  “If there is a time to get excited and a time to get passionate and active, this is it!”

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